Ingredients for 5-6 people:500 g Tubettini (or another short pasta shape)6-7 average size zucchini (approx. 700 g)2 cloves of garlic, peeled1 stalk of celery1 carrot1 average size onion5-6 leaves of “nepitella” (Calamintha nepeta) or mint (plus 2-3 leaves for garnishing)6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil3-4 tbsp aged pecorino cheese salt and pepper
Wash, clean and chop the “odori” (the word literally means “odours” and refers to the fresh aromatic ingredients used to flavour many dishes – in this case celery, carrot and onion) and lightly sauté them with the olive oil and garlic in a big, heavy-bottomed frying pan (large enough to contain the pasta). When the garlic begins to colour, remove it. In the meanwhile you will also have prepared the zucchini; washed, topped and tailed and cut into fairly small pieces. Tip them into the frying pan while the “odori” are still hot. Season with salt and pepper, stir, put the lid on the pan and cook over a moderate heat. While cooking, make sure the zucchini don’t dry out too much; if necessary add a little hot water. When they are almost cooked add the calamint leaves, torn up coarsely by hand.
Cook the pasta in plenty of boiling, salted water, strain it when it’s “al dente” (put a little of the water it was cooked in to one side) and toss it in the frying pan with the zucchini. If you see that the pasta is too dry, add a little of the pasta water that you set aside.
Before serving, garnish with the remaining calamint leaves and, if you like, a good grating of mature pecorino cheese, which is always a good idea!